Still time to create lockdown art inspired by Troopers Hill

May 18 2020
Still time to create lockdown art inspired by Troopers Hill

News from the Friends of Troopers Hill

BACK in February, when the Troopers Hill Art Competition was launched (above), little thought was given to the possible impact of COVID-19.

Now, as the competition enters its final month, it seems almost as if it was designed for current times.

From the start, entrants were being asked to email photos of their artworks to the Friends of Troopers Hill via

Only two changes have had to be made. There will be a virtual display of up to 90 artworks, rather than an open-air display, and judges will meet remotely in June to assess the artworks.

The competition is open to all ages, so for those people not fully occupied during this time, it gives an opportunity for hands and minds to be busy.

One entry, a beautiful piece of needle-felting, has come from a lady who thought she might be too old to enter. She was told it was absolutely impossible to be too old. At that stage Captain Tom had not hit the headlines, proving beyond a shadow of a doubt that age is no barrier to creative thinking.

An amazing three dimensional representation of Troopers Hill has been entered for the under-12s ‘landscape and geology’ category, using a combination of paint and recyclable or waste materials. Sadly these images cannot be shared at the moment because we do not want to prejudice our judges. The only people who are seeing the entries currently are four members of the Friends of Troopers Hill committee who receive the emails sent in.

Landscape and geology has been the favourite category for entries.

Currently only one ‘wild flora and fauna’ entry has arrived and one ‘people and history (including pets on the Hill)’.

We are living in historic times and these are certainly inspiring artists elsewhere. There is a particularly striking and sobering image in the art shop, in Hanham. The Friends have used this image on Facebook and Twitter to provide inspiration and ideas for anyone thinking of making an entry.

The Troopers Hill web page gives information about the rules of the competition, how to enter and links to information and images of Troopers Hill that might inspire an artist.

More inspiration can be found on the Troopers Hill Facebook page, where regular additions are made to a photo album to give ideas and encourage people to enter.

The most recent addition was an image created after a conservation work party in 2018 using a cartoon bee (above). This posting pointed at images of what the 83 real species of bees recorded on Troopers Hill look like, ranging from eight bumblebee species to the monochrome Ashy mining bee.

Art and Troopers Hill is not a new combination. Since 2006 the Friends have frequently included an art activity, often for children, in their events or when working to deliver a project (below).

One of the “shout outs” made during this competition has been to former pupils of Air Balloon Hill Primary School (year 3 in March 2005) and Summerhill Academy (year 3 in 2013) who both used their art skills to help produce something lasting for Troopers Hill.

The art competition closes on Sunday May 31: the Friends are looking forward to receiving your entries.

Susan Acton-Campbell